Don’t be afraid to liberate your mobile workers
Mobile working is the new normal. In our mobile multiplier research, 46% of workers say they use a mobile device for most work calls. And people love working on the go – 76% of workers say that giving them the ability to work anywhere is the best benefit a company can offer.
But how do you police it? Making the boundaries too strict or too lax can both be harmful. Locking down what workers can do out of the office kills productivity, while a policy that seems more relaxed can make them hold back if they're not sure what they can and can't do.
So how can you get the best out of mobile working? And make sure your people can work on the go, without outrageous costs or mass confusion?
Trust them – leaders need to be clear they trust their people to work effectively away from the office. In our survey, 72% of those who found mobile working easy said their leaders did just that.
Be clear with them – policies controlling which apps people can and can’t use on the go, or what they can and can’t run on their personal devices, take away grey areas. And that stops workers holding back unnecessarily.
Give them a great network – a fast, reliable and secure network means people get more done. Of the 10% of workers who told us mobile working was very easy, 43% rated their mobile network 9 or 10 out of 10.
Keep them secure – the better your security, the more mobile access you can give to back office systems and processes. Over half of workers told us they'd be even more efficient with that access.
Set the right data and roaming allowances – 20% of mobile workers say they sometimes run out of data, and 37% say roaming costs make them limit what they do overseas.
Give them the tools to do the job – 80% of people working out of the office say email is the function they use most. But they want more. More than half say they waste time trying to get hold of people, slowing down decisions. Nearly seven out of 10 want screen sharing on their mobiles, 62% want IM and 48% want video chat and conferencing. Almost 70% say better communications makes for a better business, as Marcus Hickman, author of our research, explains:
Use flexible tariffs – this will keep prices predictable and avoid bill-shock.
Save without holding workers back – Wi-Fi through our 19.5m global hotspots keeps data costs down, and calls over Wi-Fi could cut mobile and roaming costs by 45%.
Manage your mobile devices – cut your mobile spend by up to 30% by getting in control using online cost and inventory management tools.
Manage your users – give workers real-time insight into what they're spending, and alerts when they're getting near their limits.
Compress your data – compressed files cost less to send and receive.
As more and more enterprises mobilize their workforce, are they experiencing the expected improvements in effectiveness and productivity? We conducted an independent survey of 1,500 office workers in Europe in September 2016 and uncovered five clear trends in the needs of office workers.
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Jonathan Brasnett leads BT’s Global Mobility team and is responsible for the strategy and delivery of mobility solutions for BT’s customers. Jonathan has over 20 years ICT industry experience and has held a number of senior roles in BT including group strategy, country management and sales. Prior to joining BT he spent 8 years in the media and publishing sectors.
Connect with Jonathan on LinkedIn.